Collaborative sense among teachers at a secondary school.

Most teachers in my school (Nazarbayev Intellectual School in Taraz) prefer to work in isolation. They feel more confortable sitting alone and doing the tasks on their own behind the closed doors. I have never thought about collaboration as something necessary or important before the situatuion which took place at the end of the term last year. All teachers, who were teaching in the 7th grades, did not collaborate during the term, each teacher worked individually. Nobody knew what the colleagues were doing in the classroom. All interesting things happened when we started the preparation of summative test, only that time we realized that we taught different things. We gave students different vocabulary, different writing activities and different types of questions in reading and listening. It took us a lot of time in order to come up to general activities for all students. We were lucky because the summative test was prepared by us at school, otherwise if it were sent from another school, our students would not succeed. This situation helped me to comprehend that it is essential to explain teachers what is collaborative work, what benefits they can receive from working together and what impact it can have on student’s performance and their teaching style. I decided to start the exploration of this topic. After the analysis of a number of studies, I came up with my own definition of collaboration. From my point of view collaboration in teaching means to work together for the achievement of the same goal of the school and student success. “Teachers who have worked together see substantial improvements in student’s achievement, behavior, and attitude”( Inger, 1993). Inger (1993) claimed that schools, where teachers work collaboratively, students can clearly see the coherence and they can predict the expected outcomes from them, as the teachers share the same visions.

In addition, collaboration can lead to the high levels of teacher self-efficacy which can be produced by the creation of friendly and collaborative teaching environment or belief in one’s professional teaching abilities, resulting from the sharing of successful teaching strategies, reflection on teaching techniques, and an overall positive school environment (Tschannen-Moran, Woolfolk Hoy and Hoy2007).

References

Inger, M. “Teacher Collaboration in Secondary Schools.”National Center for Research in Vocational Education, 1993.

Tschannen-Moran, M., A. Woolfolk Hoy, & W. Hoy. “Teacher Efficacy: Its Meaning and Measure. ” Review of Educational Research, 1998, 202-48.

 

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3 thoughts on “Collaborative sense among teachers at a secondary school.

  1. Dear Aizhan

    You have chosen a very good topic to work on. As a practitioner I could also say that collaboration of teachers is one of the keys to success. I am very much happy with the reasons that you are driven by and the following are just some thoughts that I would like to add:
    – While doing any kind of research we really care about our stakeholders. In this case I would very much like you not to name the school and try to avoid revealing the actual participants of your research. I am pretty sure that no person would like to be seen as non-collaborative;
    – You are quick in making decisions, like the sentence We were lucky because the summative test was prepared by us at school, otherwise if it were sent from another school, our students would not succeed. What is the reason that your students would not succeed a different test? Does this mean that in future, if they are given tests not prepared by you they would not succeed? Or were there any teachers who were teaching the students completely wrong aside from just teaching them alone?

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  2. Dear Aizhan,

    Thank you for sharing this topic with us.
    I think that Collaboration is the issue not only in your school but in most schools of Kazakhstan. However, different teachers’ cultures have different effect on the whole school improvement. Individualism is not as bad thing as people think. For your future research my advice is to think about why collaboration is necessary (don’t think only about assessment). There are a lot of other issues at school which can be effectively addressed by collaboration.

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  3. Thanks, Aizhan (and commenters!).

    This first post really shows your personal voice as you explain issues of collaboration (or the lack thereof) in your school. You have very few grammar issues, which is great, but we can improve your overall organizational structure.

    Think about creating balance in your writing, where your post has a clear beginning, middle and end. If you separate your first paragraph into two parts, and add a clear conclusion to your post, it will stand alone much more independently.

    One note about APA referencing: (Tschannen-Moran, Woolfolk Hoy and Hoy2007) should use the &, not “and”. Plus be sure to use a comma and space in the in-text citations. At the end of the post, be sure to follow APA formatting too:
    Tschannen-Moran, M., A. Hoy, & K. Hoy. (1998). Teacher efficacy: Its meaning and measure. Review of Educational Research, 68(2), 202-248.
    (Italics not possible in this comment)

    4/5

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